DIY tips on how to take a rocking social avatar photo without hiring a professional photographer
After the last article I wrote which discussed social media networking avatars many of you felt inspired and the need to take quick action!
One reader said her avatar was basically laughable but she could not afford to hire a photographer.
So, how do you get a great social media networking avatar without hiring a professional photographer?
According to New York City portrait and wedding photographer Regina Fleming, most people use their cell phone or webcam to photograph their social media networking avatar.
Regina's helpful tips for taking great photos with your cell phone or webcam:
1. Find good lighting. (Outdoors is usually the best choice for amateur photographers).
2. Try to avoid facial distortion. Keep the device that you are using to capture your image at least 15 to 17 inches away from your face. You may be able to minimize the distortion which otherwise might have drawn the viewers eye to a large nose or a big forehead in your photographs.
3. Pose your face in different angles: straight-on and three-quarters, and keep your chin down slightly, eyes to the camera and smile. Say cheese!
I recently photographed and retouched a social media networking avatar for “Focus on Style” reader Leslie McCracken using some of Regina's tips. Columbia graduate Leslie is a writer and usually finds herself in a group photo, later cropping out the other people, and using the shot as her social media networking avatar. She told me she wanted a social media networking avatar that captured her spirit, her spunkiness, and fitting with her lifestyle as a writer.
Everyone can look fabulous with a few DIY photographer pointers. Don't believe me? Look at the amazing difference in Leslie's before/after photos here.
Here is how I did it:
I suggested she pick some clothing that made her feel great, get a good night sleep and get ready for her shoot.
I chose New York's Central Park to photograph Leslie on a beautiful overcast day. Overcast is great for avoiding harsh shadows in photos.
Leslie arrived wearing beautiful bold accessories that embodied her sense of flavor and style. I used the typical digital camera marketed to consumers. I set the camera's resolution to high for better picture quality. Next, I photographed Leslie in a location that was not too crowded and did not have a distracting background. The result is a shot that is simple, natural, and captures the subjects' personality and true essence.
Now that you are armed with some great tips don't be afraid to pull out your digital camera, cell phone, or webcam to snap that perfect social media networking avatar! — Sharon Daniels, “The Skin Perfecter”